Monday, September 18, 2006

Back to Mundania

Well, that was fun. Until I drove home to a messy house and lazy kids living in their own squalor. Bleah. How many glasses does one NEED to dirty in six hours? Empty pizza boxes and dirty socks. Nevermind. I had a hissy fit and it's over. I will, however, show off my garb and then back to the business of tarot:

First, my new gypsy garb. The picture is not very clear, but the skirt panels are a beautiful satin paisley, and the waist cincher is leather but I did not make that. I took several decks and did a few readings, but mostly I was "off duty." That woodpile is what was leftover after the first night's fires and was used up for the second night. We had four fire pits in our encampment that lit up the night.

The battle games are fun to watch. Both men and women take the field. I have done so at times, but I prefer to relax (read: laze around in pretty clothes) for the most part. Here is a shot of two women going at it on the field during a company battle. There are fighting companies/households that are for women only, but most companies are co-ed. As you can see, the weapons are fully padded as are the shields. You can get hurt, but usually you don't. Unlike the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism), Amtgard does not allow live steel weaponry. It's less realistic, to be sure, but it tends to be safer. And it's a great outlet for aggression!

I think my friend Brad makes an excellent Knight of Swords in this picture. The full leather armor is pretty striking. When people wear steel armor, they clank when they walk and I can't help laughing as they sound very much like the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz. The leather armor is useful, even though the weapons are padded because it takes more hits to "kill" someone in armor. They don't require helms, though some wear them, because head shots, anything above the shoulders, are not allowed. No decapitating in Amtgard. Head shots occur accidentally at times, though, and I once recieved a shot to my throat that left me unable to breathe for a moment. However, hits "below the belt" are allowed, so in that case women have an advantage. "Nut shots" don't disable us.

Finally, this is the court garb I wore Saturday night. I got the hem completely filthy and have a fresh appreciation for those who had to wash these kinds of dresses by hand. In tubs. With care. Every time I wear this dress I also understand why nobility needed people to help them dress. The inner bodice has laces up the sides. What kind of contortionist does one have to be to get dressed?

As demure as I may appear in this this photo, I assure you I was still able to take up a sword and surprise a few folks with my ability to block, parry, and wrap shot in a German Renn gown no less and slightly tipsy too. I actually fight better after a few drinks. I become unreserved and fearless. Grrr!

It was actually a wonderful weekend, the weather held up with only a few sprinkly showers, it wasn't too hot or too cold, and there was much feasting and laughter and silliness. I'm already looking at patterns for my next feast garb.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

It sounds like a great time. What an awesome experience that must be.

Ruby

Roswila said...

Hail Sophia,

Wow. I love the costumes. I've been to the Renn Fair in upstate New York, but only on day visits. My friend used to go in Renn garb. The most I did one time was buy a medieval hat with gorgeous plumes in colors that matched my t-shirt (bright purple and green).

Funny thing: I dreamed about the entrance to a Renn Fair last night. All sorts of Renn garb and accessories were being dumped out the driver's door of a car. :-)

blessings,
Patricia (a/k/a Roswila)

Ginny said...

That's funny, Roswila, about your dream. That Renn stuff is expensive! I'm really grateful that I am a seamstress because otherwise...well...cha-ching!

The Amtgard events aren't nearly as stunning, visually, as the Renn Faires or the SCA Pensic event. Some people call it the "poor man's SCA" and in a way they are right. Although Amtgard is very different from the SCA in that it is not purely historically based, but more role-play and fantasy driven, it is not as concerned with historical accuracy and period re-creation. Yet because it is not, it allows those who would not have the means to buy steel weapons and armor, make or buy period garb, etc. a chance to participate fully in the game. It's low-budget, but it's fun. :)

Shawn Cameron said...

Ok so this is a few years late but I found your sight and have been reading all of the back entrys and just had to coment.

Your german garb is gorguse! I play in the SCA and you could give them a run for their money. Though I have to mention that the SCA uses ratan sticks and not live steel for their hard suit battles and dull flexable steel for their rapir battles. Either way both are awsome and again your cort garb is lovely.

(Please Forgive the spelling I'm typing on my phone)

Shawn

Ginny said...

Wow, Shawn, glad you found the archives! :D I love to make garb, but it's not period construction. I use modern shortcuts and materials, though I strive to make it appear as period as possible. To be a purist would drive me crazy and then I'd never get to wear the pretty dresses as they would end up in a heap on the floor!

Hope you're enjoying 78 Notes To Self.

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